OLIVE OIL T he olive tree and olive oil –symbols of peace, prosperity and knowledge– are substantial elements of the people who live on the shores of the Mediterranean, birthplace of civilizations that marked long periods of history. There are signs of this precious greeny-gold liquid squeezed from olives all along this route. It is a vital activity in the area, where the abundant production comes under the designation of origin of oil from Baena and Priego and provides the opportunity for tasting some of the best varieties in the world. FOOD T here are marinades, different salad dressings, stews made with ancient recipes, all along the way. Local cooking has tried not to forget its cultural heritage and quite a few of the recipes have been rediscovered in old Moorish and Hebrew manuscripts. Among the favourite dishes, we have salmorejo (a slightly different and creamier version of gazpacho), artichokes a la montillana, oxtail or flamenquines. For dessert, one should try pastel cordobés or suspiros de Almanzor (sighs of Almanzor of Córdoba). WINE T he area of Montilla-Moriles in the province of Córdoba produces some excellent wines: finos, oloroso, amontillado and dulces, made from Pedro Ximénez grapes, which are widespread throughout the area. They are delicious with various kinds of sausages, as well as with deserts. There are also a few smaller wine-producing FROM THE MOSQUE TO THE ALHAMBRA T he mosque was the core of daily life in Hispano- Muslim cities. Prayer, teaching, administration of justice and social relations all went on inside or around the mosque. There were three distinct elements: tower, courtyard and hall of prayer. The muezzin called the faithful to prayer from the tower or minaret. Ritual ablutions were carried out in the courtyard or shan. The hall of prayer, or liwan, was an open rectangular space, leading to a wall, al-qibla, facing Mecca. In the middle of that wall was the mihrab –an empty niche that indicated the direction of prayers. The principal mosque or aljama was situated in the centre of the town and of its trading quarter, the medina. Not far, were the madrasa or college of Mohammedan studies and the alcaicería –a series of lanes with shops that offered the most valuable wares. The mosque in Córdoba is the foremost example of Andalusi mosques. Apart from these religious and civilian buildings, there were the alcazabas (fortresses) and alcázares. They were fortified citadels which, apart from providing the military elements, also contained the palatial quarters of the rulers. The Alhambra is an exceptional example of this type of fortified citadel. T he province of Córdoba can still boast the highest number of artisans in an age when both workshops and trades are fast disappearing. The quality of cordovan work (leather) and pottery was already praised in times of Charlemagne and one is able to find fine examples today. Jewellers are particularly flourishing nowadays in Córdoba, with goldsmiths and silversmiths, as well as setters and engravers who produce some very attractive pieces. Various villages along the way also have pottery, wood-work and wrought-iron workshops that are well worth visiting. ARCHITECTURE GASTRONOMY HANDICRAFTS T he journey between Córdoba and Granada is more or less 180 km (112 miles) long. Starting in Córdoba, it splits in two: the main road northwards along the road N-432 in the direction of Baena and other towns, follows the more popular and traditional route from the Guadalquivir valley towards Granada. The southern route winds along N-331 and other roads, through various towns, such as Lucena and Priego. Both ways join up again at Alcalá la Real, from there through Moclín to Pinos Puente and other towns in the plains of Granada, till the outskirts of the Nasrid capital are finally reached. ROUTES AND DISTANCES T here is a full calendar of feasts along the Route of the Caliphate throughout the year. Cruces de Mayo are famous in Córdoba, and so is Corpus Christi in Granada; and then each village or hamlet has its own feast, such as the original celebration of Cristo del Paño in Moclín, the pilgrimages of Nuestra Señora de la Sierra in Cabra and that of Nuestra Señora de Araceli in Lucena, without forgetting the processions of coliblancos and colinegros during the Holy Week in Baena, as seen in the illustration. The Route of the Caliphate runs between Córdoba and Granada along the roads N-432 and N-331 approximately 180 km (112 miles). On the way, it crosses the Guadalquivir valley, the sierras and the fertile plains of Granada Reproduction of a mosque, like many of those found along this route from Andalusi times. Detail of the area of the Royal Palace in the Alhambra of Granada. TRADITIONAL FEASTS The Route of the Caliphate It runs between the two most important towns of Hispano- Muslim history, Córdoba and Granada, including the frontier area of Jaén. Two great towns and two great centuries. Córdoba's consequence was world-wide and Granada's was one of refinement and drama. These are the two extremes on either side of the immense cultural, political and social heritage of al-Andalus, a civilization with unique and unrepeatable features. Between both, there is a land of legends, garrisons, watchtowers and castles, of remarkable towns, people and customs. Two large geographical depressions are connected in the Route of the Caliphate –Guadalquivir and Granada– linked by the valleys across the southern sierras. There are two mountain ranges, Sierra Morena in the province of Córdoba and Sierra Nevada in the province of Granada. During the reigns of the Umayyad caliphs, the territory that lies along this route was included in three provinces or coras: Córdoba, Cabra and Ilbira. All three were part of the splendor of the Caliphate in Córdoba, which was the most brilliant center of learning in the western world at that time. Here was the scenery of the adventures and episodes sung in medieval Spanish romances. CÓRDOBA Centro de Recepción de Visitantes de la Junta de Andalucía. Plaza del Triunfo s/n. Tel. 957 355 179 - 902 201 744 Punto de Información Turística. Estación AVE-RENFE-ADIF Glorieta de las Tres Culturas, s/n Tel. 902 201 774 Patronato Provincial de Turismo de Córdoba. Calle Imágenes, 15. Tel. 957 491 677 Consorcio de Turismo de Córdoba. Punto de Información Turística. Plaza de las Tendillas, s/n. Tel. 902 201 774 ESPEJO Ayuntamiento. Plaza de la Constitución, 5. Tel. 957 376 001 CASTRO DEL RÍO Punto de Información Turística (Ayuntamiento). El Mirador de la Artesanía. Tel. 957 943 081 BAENA Oficina Municipal de Turismo. Calle Virrey del Pino, 5. Tel. 957 671 757 ZUHEROS Oficina de Información Turística. Plaza de la Paz, 2. Tel. 957 694 545 LUQUE Ayuntamiento. Plaza de España, 11. Tel. 957 667 300 FERNÁN NÚÑEZ Centro de Participación Ciudadana (Punto de Información Turística). Calle Miguel Hernández, 9. Tel. 957 382 124 MONTEMAYOR Casa de la Cultura. Calle Juan Pedro Carmona, 6. Tel. 957 375 458 MONTILLA Oficina de Turismo. Calle Capitán Alonso de Vargas, 3. Tel. 957 652354 AGUILAR DE LA FRONTERA Oficina de Turismo. Plaza de San José, 1. Tel. 957 688 203 LUCENA Oficina de Información Turística. Palacio de los Condes de Santa Ana. Calle San Pedro, 42. Tel. 957 513 282 CABRA Oficina Municipal de Turismo. Calle Mayor s/n. Tel 957 523 493 CARCABUEY Oficina de Turismo. Calle Majadilla, 1. Tel. 957 704 140 PRIEGO DE CÓRDOBA Oficina Municipal de Turismo. Plaza de la Constitución,3. Tel. 957 700 625 ALCAUDETE Oficina Municipal de Turismo. Plaza de Sta. María s/n. Tel. 953 560 304 CASTILLO DE LOCUBÍN Ayuntamiento. Calle Blas Infante, 19. Tel. 953 591 364 ALCALÁ LA REAL Oficina Municipal de Turismo. Carrera de las Mercedes s/n. Tel. 953 582 077 MOCLÍN Oficina Municipal de Información Turística. Torre Puerta (Fortaleza de Moclín). Tel. 611 429 789 COLOMERA Ayuntamiento. Avenida Virgen de la Cabeza, 9. Tel. 958 387 011 PINOS PUENTE Ayuntamiento. Calle Real, 121. Tel. 958 450 136 GÜEVÉJAR Ayuntamiento. Plaza de la Constitución, 7. Tel. 958 428 001 COGOLLOS VEGA Ayuntamiento. Plaza del Mercado s/n. Tel. 958 409 161 ALFACAR Ayuntamiento. Plaza de la Iglesia, 1. Tel. 958 543 002 VÍZNAR Ayuntamiento. Plaza de la Constitución, 5. Tel. 958 543 304 GRANADA Oficina de Turismo de la Junta de Andalucía. Plaza Nueva. Santa Ana, 4. Tel. 958 575 202 Oficina de Información Turística del Patronato Provincial. Calle Cárcel Baja 3. Tel. 958 247 128 Oficina Municipal de Información Turística. Ayuntamiento de Granada. Plaza del Carmen s/n. Tel. 958 248 280 Information Points T his route includes several most remarkable landscapes, such as Sierras Subbéticas Cordobesas Natural Park with the main rocky outcrops in this area: La Tiñosa, Pico Bermejo, Lobatejo and El Picacho peaks. Further along the way there are Sierra de Moclín and Sierra Elvira and the Natural Park of Sierra de Huétor, that appear to act as the advance guard to the northern slopes of Sierra Nevada. LANDSCAPE Three examples of Hispano-Muslim art, which may be visited along this route: Madinat al-Zahra above, the Mosque in Córdoba and the Alhambra in Granada. The legacy of al-Andalus Corral del Carbón. Granada, Spain. Headquarters of El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation. T he Iberian Peninsula went through one of the most privileged periods in its history during the Muslim era, which resulted in a brilliant civilization. During this time, Andalusia became the cultural centre of Europe and the link between East and West. The Routes of “El legado andalusí” go through those paths which connected the kingdom of Granada with the rest of al-Andalus in the past. Along this itinerary travellers have the possibility of enjoying wonderful landscapes on a quiet journey, tasting exquisite dishes and giving free rein to their imagination by turning past events into a present experience. Route of the Caliphate From Córdoba to Granada Cultural Route of the Council of Europe Fundación Pública Andaluza El legado andalusí Calle Mariana Pineda s/n. Corral del Carbón. 18009 Granada, Spain. Telephone: +34 958 225 995. www.legadoandalusi.es - www.rutas.legadoandalusi.es - [email protected]. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter: legadoandalusi
Text of The Route of the Caliphate T - legado andalusi
The olive tree andolive oil –symbolsof peace, prosperity
and knowledge– aresubstantial elements ofthe people who live onthe shores of the
Mediterranean, birthplace of civilizations that markedlong periods of history. There are signs of this preciousgreeny-gold liquid squeezed from olives all along thisroute. It is a vital activity in the area, where the abundantproduction comes under the designation of origin of oilfrom Baena and Priego and provides the opportunity fortasting some of the best varieties in the world.
There aremarinades,different salad
dressings, stews madewith ancient recipes, allalong the way. Local
cooking has tried not to forget its cultural heritage andquite a few of the recipes have been rediscovered in oldMoorish and Hebrew manuscripts. Among the favouritedishes, we have salmorejo (a slightly different andcreamier version of gazpacho), artichokes a la montillana,oxtail or flamenquines. For dessert, one should try pastelcordobés or suspiros de Almanzor (sighs of Almanzor ofCórdoba).
The area ofMontilla-Moriles inthe province of
Córdoba produces someexcellent wines: finos,
oloroso, amontillado and dulces, made from Pedro Ximénezgrapes, which are widespread throughout the area. Theyare delicious with various kinds of sausages, as well aswith deserts. There are also a few smaller wine-producing
FROM THE MOSQUE TO THE ALHAMBRA
The mosque was the core of daily life in Hispano-Muslim cities. Prayer, teaching, administration ofjustice and social relations all went on inside or
around the mosque. There were three distinct elements:tower, courtyard and hall of prayer. The muezzin called thefaithful to prayer from the tower or minaret. Ritualablutions were carried out in the courtyard or shan. Thehall of prayer, or liwan, was an openrectangular space, leading to awall, al-qibla, facingMecca. In themiddle of thatwall was the
mihrab –an empty niche that indicated the direction ofprayers. The principal mosque or aljama was situated inthe centre of the town and of its trading quarter, themedina. Not far, were the madrasa or college ofMohammedan studies and the alcaicería –a series of laneswith shops that offered the most valuable wares. Themosque in Córdoba is the foremost example of Andalusimosques. Apart from these religious and civilian buildings,there were the alcazabas (fortresses) and alcázares. Theywere fortified citadels which, apart from providing themilitary elements, also contained the palatial quarters of
the rulers.The Alhambra is an exceptional example of this
type of fortified citadel.
The province of Córdobacan still boast the highestnumber of artisans in an
age when both workshops andtrades are fast disappearing. Thequality of cordovan work(leather) and pottery was
already praised in times of Charlemagne and one is ableto find fine examples today. Jewellers are particularlyflourishing nowadays in Córdoba, with goldsmiths andsilversmiths, as well as setters and engravers whoproduce some very attractive pieces. Various villagesalong the way also have pottery, wood-work andwrought-iron workshops that are well worth visiting.
The journey between Córdoba and Granada is moreor less 180 km (112 miles) long. Starting inCórdoba, it splits in two: the main road
northwards along the road N-432 in the direction ofBaena and other towns, follows the more popular andtraditional route from the Guadalquivir valley towardsGranada. The southern route winds along N-331 andother roads, through various towns, such as Lucena andPriego. Both ways join up again at Alcalá la Real, fromthere through Moclín to Pinos Puente and other towns inthe plains of Granada, till the outskirts of the Nasridcapital are finally reached.
ROUTES AND DISTANCES
There is a full calendar of feasts along the Route ofthe Caliphate throughout the year. Cruces de Mayoare famous in Córdoba, and so is Corpus Christi in
Granada; and then each village or hamlet has its ownfeast, such as the original celebration of Cristo del Paño inMoclín, the pilgrimages of Nuestra Señora de la Sierra inCabra and that of Nuestra Señora de Araceli in Lucena,without forgetting the processions of coliblancos andcolinegros during the Holy Week in Baena, as seen in theillustration.
The Route of the Caliphate runsbetween Córdoba and Granadaalong the roads N-432 and N-331approximately 180 km (112 miles).On the way, it crosses theGuadalquivir valley, the sierras andthe fertile plains of Granada
Reproduction of amosque, like manyof those foundalong this routefrom Andalusitimes.
Detail of thearea of the RoyalPalace in theAlhambra ofGranada.
The Route of the Caliphate
It runs between the two mostimportant towns of Hispano-Muslim history, Córdoba andGranada, including the frontierarea of Jaén. Two great townsand two great centuries.Córdoba's consequence was
world-wide and Granada's was one of refinementand drama. These are the two extremes on eitherside of the immense cultural, political and socialheritage of al-Andalus, a civilization with unique andunrepeatable features. Between both, there is a landof legends, garrisons, watchtowers and castles, ofremarkable towns, people and customs. Two largegeographical depressions are connected in the Routeof the Caliphate –Guadalquivir and Granada– linkedby the valleys across the southern sierras. There aretwo mountain ranges, Sierra Morena in the provinceof Córdoba and Sierra Nevada in the province ofGranada. During the reigns of the Umayyad caliphs,the territory that lies along this route was included inthree provinces or coras: Córdoba, Cabra and Ilbira.All three were part of the splendor of the Caliphatein Córdoba, which was the most brilliant center oflearning in the western world at that time. Here wasthe scenery of the adventures and episodes sung inmedieval Spanish romances.
CÓRDOBACentro de Recepción deVisitantes de la Junta deAndalucía.Plaza del Triunfo s/n.Tel. 957 355 179 - 902 201 744
Punto de Información Turística. Estación AVE-RENFE-ADIF Glorieta de las Tres Culturas, s/nTel. 902 201 774
Patronato Provincial deTurismo de Córdoba.Calle Imágenes, 15.Tel. 957 491 677
Consorcio de Turismo deCórdoba. Punto deInformación Turística.Plaza de las Tendillas, s/n.Tel. 902 201 774
ESPEJOAyuntamiento. Plaza de la Constitución, 5.Tel. 957 376 001
CASTRO DEL RÍOPunto de InformaciónTurística (Ayuntamiento).El Mirador de la Artesanía.Tel. 957 943 081
BAENAOficina Municipal de Turismo.Calle Virrey del Pino, 5.Tel. 957 671 757
ZUHEROSOficina de InformaciónTurística.Plaza de la Paz, 2.Tel. 957 694 545
LUQUEAyuntamiento.Plaza de España, 11.Tel. 957 667 300
FERNÁN NÚÑEZCentro de ParticipaciónCiudadana (Punto deInformación Turística).Calle Miguel Hernández, 9.Tel. 957 382 124
MONTEMAYORCasa de la Cultura.Calle Juan Pedro Carmona, 6.Tel. 957 375 458
MONTILLAOficina de Turismo.Calle Capitán Alonso deVargas, 3.Tel. 957 652354
AGUILAR DE LAFRONTERAOficina de Turismo.Plaza de San José, 1.Tel. 957 688 203
LUCENAOficina de Información Turística.Palacio de los Condes deSanta Ana.Calle San Pedro, 42.Tel. 957 513 282
CABRAOficina Municipal de Turismo. Calle Mayor s/n. Tel 957 523 493
CARCABUEYOficina de Turismo.Calle Majadilla, 1.Tel. 957 704 140
PRIEGO DE CÓRDOBAOficina Municipal de Turismo.Plaza de la Constitución,3. Tel. 957 700 625
ALCAUDETEOficina Municipal de Turismo.Plaza de Sta. María s/n.Tel. 953 560 304
CASTILLO DE LOCUBÍNAyuntamiento.Calle Blas Infante, 19.Tel. 953 591 364
ALCALÁ LA REALOficina Municipal de Turismo. Carrera de las Mercedes s/n. Tel. 953 582 077
MOCLÍNOficina Municipal deInformación Turística. TorrePuerta (Fortaleza de Moclín).Tel. 611 429 789
COLOMERAAyuntamiento.Avenida Virgen de la Cabeza, 9.Tel. 958 387 011
GÜEVÉJARAyuntamiento.Plaza de la Constitución, 7.Tel. 958 428 001
COGOLLOS VEGAAyuntamiento.Plaza del Mercado s/n.Tel. 958 409 161
ALFACARAyuntamiento.Plaza de la Iglesia, 1.Tel. 958 543 002
VÍZNARAyuntamiento.Plaza de la Constitución, 5.Tel. 958 543 304
GRANADAOficina de Turismo de la Juntade Andalucía.Plaza Nueva. Santa Ana, 4.Tel. 958 575 202
Oficina de InformaciónTurística del PatronatoProvincial.Calle Cárcel Baja 3.Tel. 958 247 128
Oficina Municipal deInformación Turística.Ayuntamiento de Granada. Plaza del Carmen s/n. Tel. 958 248 280
This route includes several most remarkablelandscapes, such as Sierras Subbéticas CordobesasNatural Park with the main rocky outcrops in this
area: La Tiñosa, Pico Bermejo, Lobatejo and El Picachopeaks. Further along the way there are Sierra de Moclínand Sierra Elvira and the Natural Park of Sierra deHuétor, that appear to act as the advance guard to thenorthern slopes of Sierra Nevada.
Three examples ofHispano-Muslim art,which may be visitedalong this route:Madinat al-Zahra above,the Mosque in Córdobaand the Alhambra inGranada.
The legacy of al-Andalus
Corral del Carbón. Granada, Spain.Headquarters of El legado andalusí Andalusian Public Foundation.
The Iberian Peninsula went through one of themost privileged periods in its history duringthe Muslim era, which resulted in a brilliant
civilization. During this time, Andalusia became thecultural centre of Europe and the link between Eastand West.
The Routes of “El legado andalusí” go throughthose paths which connected the kingdom ofGranada with the rest of al-Andalus in the past.Along this itinerary travellers have the possibility ofenjoying wonderful landscapes on a quiet journey,tasting exquisite dishes and giving free rein to theirimagination by turning past events into a presentexperience.
www.legadoandalusi.es - www.rutas.legadoandalusi.es - [email protected] us on Facebook and Twitter: legadoandalusi
On the banks ofthe Guadalquivir,this is a livelytown, theprovincial capitalcity that providesthe usualinfrastructure andutilities, as well asoverseeingagriculturalproduction –particularly olivegroves andvineyards. Historyshows that it wasthe centre of
learning and knowledge. It was already of some importanceunder the Romans; it was where the philosopher Seneca andthe poet Lucan were born and it was the capital of HispaniaUlterior. It became the capital of the Umayyad Caliphate, wherethe people of three different cultural traditions –Muslims, Jewsand Mozarabes– lived peacefully together and contributed tothe recovery of the classical culture of ancient Greece andretrieved it for Europe through its scholars, such as Averroesand Maimonides. Under Abd al-Rahman III, Córdoba becamethe centre of civilization, a bridge between east and west. Sucha dazzling past has left its mark in wonderful buildings. TheMosque, one of the most remarkable works of art of all times,Heritage of Humanity, represents the essence of a city thatreceives visitors with open arms. Not far, are the remarkableruins of the palatine town Madinat al-Zahra.
This medieval town dates from the latter half of the 14th c. Itowes its name to one of the beneficiaries of the distribution ofland following the Christian conquest. It became quite well-known in the 17th c. as a result of the enlightened minds of thelocal lords. The ducal palace, begun in 1783, is worthy of note;it still has some remains of the medieval fortress that was theorigin of the town. The parish church of Santa Marina deAguas Santas is a magnificent example of baroque architecture,built around a 14th c. tower. The local festivities revolve around18th July and the Feria Real (royal fair) is held in August.
This is a fortress townwith a view over lowcultivated countryside.It may well haveexisted in the year2000 BC, though theactual settlement datesfrom 1340, builtaround a medievalcastle. The church of
La Asunción is a blend of Gothic and Mudejar, plus laterreforms. There are several hermitages in the neighbourhood,as well as the remains of the castle of Dos Hermanas,originally Moorish.
The village and castle of Montilla was awarded as a suzerainty in1257 by Alfonso X. In 1508 Ferdinand the Catholic ordered thatit should be torn down and part of the remains were used tobegin building the church of Santiago. The church of La
Encarnación, begun in1681, is considered ahistorical monument ofnational interest, and so isthe Convent of SantaClara by the architectHernán Ruiz, finished atthe beginning of the 18thc. It houses a valuablecollection of works of art.There is also the house ofEl Inca Garcilaso de laVega, the house of San
Juan de Ávila and the palace of the dukes of Medinaceli.Montilla is famed above all for its wines that carry their owndesignation of origin and some of its bodegas (wine cellars) maybe visited. The grape gathering festivities are held at the end ofAugust - beginning of September, during which the grapes arepressed in the old way. The wines include fino (similar to sherry),amontillado (dark golden colour and strong aroma) and oloroso(matured white wine that can become quite strong).
AGUILAR DE LA FRONTERA
This town was a municipality already under the Romans.During the Moorish occupation, it became known due to theMuwallad (Spaniard who adopted the Muslim religion)rebellion of Omar ibn Hafsun in the 9th c. Right on the roadfrom Málaga to Córdoba, itbecame an important fortresstown and remained so until theend of the Middle Ages. Of itsAndalusi past, there are bits ofwalls and towers on the hillover the village, known asPeñón del Moro. The villagesquare of San José is one ofthe few polygonal squares in Spain.
The first mention of this town goes back tothe 9th c. to the effect that it was inhabitedby Jews. Held by the Almoravids, it waseconomically prosperous and culturallyadvanced. The parish church of SanMateo, a National Monument, is possiblythe original mosque that, in turn, mighthave been built over a synagogue. Thereformed castle stands in the Plaza Nuevaand is famous for having served as a prisonfor Boabdil, last monarch of the Nasridkingdom of Granada, captured at the battleof Lucena.
This is an area where thelargest number ofarchaeological sites havebeen found in the province ofCórdoba, with remains thatgo as far back as thePaleolithic Age. The castle ofthe Counts of Cabra was firsta Roman fortress andafterwards, Moorish. Theparish church, which hasforty-four red marblecolumns, was built over the old mosque. The source of theCabra river is not far away.
Settled in the limits of theSubbeticas mountain ranges, thistown from Córdoba has beenmarked by the passage ofnumerous civilizations due to itscondition of frontier town.Karkabul, the ancient Arabdesignation that means mountainpass, is towered by the parish
church of La Asunción and by a medieval castle. It offers thevisitor many alternatives for enjoyment, such as itsgastronomy and festivities.
PRIEGO DE CÓRDOBA
Throughout history, this town has always been importantstrategically. The historian Ibn al-Khatib stated that in 745 theEgyptian soldiers who had entered the Peninsula settled in Bagoand built fortresses among the high surrounding hills. Bagub,the Arabic name for Priego, probably grew out of one of thesefortresses. In the year 889 it became the centre of operationsfor Ibn Mastana, one of the leaders of the Muwallad revolt,who proclaimed himself lord of Priego and Luque. The townwas finally conquered by Alfonso XI and it was not until 1502when real progress began and a great many buildings were putup. From its Andalusi past there are, among others, the castle
that was later reformed by the Christians, the Barrio de la Villa(La Villa quarter), the original centre of Priego with Moorishand medieval features, the Alfar building (potter’s workshop)where pottery is made and several watchtowers in the vicinity.Other monuments are the late Gothic church of La Asunción,dating from the 16th c., restored later in the 18th c. to abaroque model; as well as the churches of La Aurora and SanFrancisco. Fuente del Rey is a characteristic feature of the townand a National Monument. There are some pleasant excursionsnear Priego, the road to Las Lagunillas for example, at the footof Sierra Horconera, leading to La Tiñosa, highest spot in theprovince (1,570 m. asl), to El Cerezo and to the Pico Bermejogullies. A typical dish in Priego is ajo blanco and meatballs madewith fresh anchovies.
The outline of its castle ontop of a hill can be seenfrom some way off,overlooking the valley of theGuadajoz river. There arequite a few Iberian andRoman remains in the area.The thick powerful wallswere put up by the Caliphsof Córdoba. The parishchurch of San Bartolomé is
quite interesting, and so is the large house of the Dukes ofOsuna. It is possible to find excellent and traditionalconfectionery in some of the bakeries, such as mostachones orcuajados.
CASTRO DEL RÍO
Its history goes hand in hand with the castle, which isa common feature of "frontier" villages (the frontierbetween Muslim and Christian territories). Theorigins are suspected to be pre-Roman; there area few remains of the old wall that used to
surround the highest part of the Barrio dela Villa. The front of La Asunción church isplateresque, eroded by the passing of time.The local Fair of Santiago is held between25th and 27th July and it also includes thepilgrimage of Nuestra Señora of La Saludand the Cattle Fair.
This town seems to be a compendium of Andalusian historysince pre-Roman times. The place-name Bayyana comes fromthe Hispano-Roman owner of the villa, someone called Baius.On arrival of the Muslims in the 8th c. this was an activemilitary, administrative and agricultural centre. The old partcalled Almedina, still has an Oriental air. The castle was begunin the 9th c. and enlarged during the Caliphate and theChristian conquest. Subsequently it became the summer palacefor the lords of Baena who in the 16th c. were great patronsand, therefore, responsible for the town's most outstandingbuildings. The church of Santa María la Mayor is flamboyantGothic and there are references to it in the 12th c. when it wasa mosque before being turned into a Christian church in the14th c. Nowadays, it is a delightful building with three splendidfaçades and some lovely chapels. It was reformed after theearthquake of 1681. Another remarkable building is the churchof the convent of the Dominican nuns dating from the 16th c.that contains marble statues, carved frameworks and paintingssuch as one by Zurbarán, another by Sánchez Coello and twoby Bassano. El Coso square is a pleasing composition and agood example of the old part of the town, that is also the centreof a large area of olive groves that produce an excellent type ofvirgin oil under its designation of origin; a visit to theinstallations of Núñez de Prado Olive Oil and its traditionalpress is quite interesting. Holy Week is a popular feast, with itsprocessions of judíos coliblancos and judíos colinegros (white andblack-tailed Jews). The former also participate in thepilgrimage of La Virgen Blanca de la Alegría at the end ofJune.
This is a Moorish town at the foot of a rocky range, from whereit has its name Suhayra, which means rock in Arabic. The 9th c.castle is perched on top of one of these enormous rocks. Not far
is La Cueva delos Murciélagos(cave of bats)with cavepaintings and anoutstandingvantage pointover thisextraordinarylandscape.
Right in the middle ofthe Sierras SubbéticasNatural Environment,the inevitable castlestands out, built byMohammed I in the 9thc., and rebuilt by theNasrids in the 13th c.The parish churchstarted out Gothic andended up beingRenaissance. A populardish in this area isstewed kid.
This town is in the countrysideof the province of Jaén,surrounded by olive trees,orchards and vineyards. It wasa Visigoth settlement whenTarik took it in the year 715and the Muslims settled around
a Roman tower. Centuries later, the principal church of SantaMaría was built not far away, and it is an interesting catalogueof superimposed styles. There are many excursions to beenjoyed in the area, such as to the neo-Gothic cemetery, thehermitages nearby, Parador del Conde, park of La Fuensantaand the rivers San Juan and Víboras.
CASTILLO DE LOCUBÍN
From Hisn al Uqbin, there are stillsome visible remains of LasÁguilas castle at a place knownas La Villeta, consisting of agroup of white houses fromwhere there is a wide view overthe countryside. From here thereare excursions to Encinahermosa,that has some Ibero-Romanremains; a horse or a bicycle ridewill lead you to Ventas del
Carrizal among orchards, poplars and farm houses, to Sierra dela Martina and to the source of the San Juan river.
ALCALÁ LA REAL
This is a village with an essentially Andalusi history. The firstpart of its name, as of many other towns, comes from theArabic Qalat, which means fortified settlement. It was a frontiertown, key to the valley of the Guadalquivir and to the fertileplains of Granada and its coat of arms has a key right in themiddle. It was known to the Iberians and Romans and theMoors lived there for more than six hundred years, duringwhich it grew around the fortress. A high point in Alcalá'sAndalusi past was reached in the 12th c.; it changed handsfrequently before finally falling into Christian hands. It wasfrom here that the Catholic Monarchs –Ferdinand andIsabella– rode out in order to receive the keys upon thesurrender of Granada. Alcalá was the principal fortress on thefrontier, connected to the castles of Alcaudete and Locubín, aswell as to a series of watchtowers, most of which are stillvisible. La Mota fortress has two distinct spaces, the alcazaba orcitadel and the abbey church. The former consists of three
towers –Campana, Mocha and Del Homenaje (keep)–, aroundthe courtyard and is the old military quarters of the Muslimtown. Large rocks form part of the walls and there arealtogether seven doors, leading downwards to the village. The abbey church Santa María la Mayor on one of the castle'sesplanades, is a mixture of renaissance and plateresque.Remains of the first gothic church have been discovered in thenave, as well as tombs and crypts and two Roman wells. Whatused to be the mosque is nowadays the church of SantoDomingo de Silos, begun in 1341, subsequently reformed byMaximilian of Austria. The Archaeological Museum, settled inthe historical town, is housed in the Palacio Abacial (abbatialpalace). The feast of the patron saint, Santo Domingo, iscelebrated on 20th December in memory of of Alfonso XI'sconquest of Arrabal Viejo. On 15th August, feast of theAssumption, there is a procession with 12,000 lighted torches.
Only 25 km (15.5 miles) from Granada, locatedamong pastures, this old Roman settlement wasknown as Columbarium. In the times of the Moors,it was a farmstead known as Qulunbayra, and only
little remains of the old fortress. It was takenby Ferdinand and Isabella in 1486.The church of La Encarnación wasbuilt at the beginning of the 16th c.and is a goodly mixture of Gothic,renaissance and mudejar. Nearby area Roman bridge and a necropolis.
This used to be an important location in the defensive systemalong one of the branches followed by the Route of theCaliphate. During the 14th and 15th centuries its historyconsisted of a series of conquests, reconquests, exchanges andtruces. The castle, from Nasrid times, has two clearly distinctareas. The first is in a better state of repair than the others andnow consists of an access tower. The second area is the citadel.In the lower part of the first area we find the Church of Cristode El Paño, founded by the Catholic Kings and the renaissanceCasa del Pósito (granary). There are various pleasant excursionsto be made in the vicinity to outlying watchtowers within thedefense system, such as Torre de la Porqueriza, some 3 km (1.8miles) away, Torre de Mingoandrés on the hill of the samename and Torre de la Solana. Main road 432 through Tiena,upwards towards Moclín, offers a wide view of Sierra Nevada,La Almijara, Harana and the fertile plains of Granada. Thereare also prehistoric remains near Cueva del Malalmuerzo, Corcuelaand Tózar.
Its origins are related to the Ibero-Roman town of Illurco, nearby. Ithas always been mentioned as theprovider of farm produce toGranada. It is known for being theplace to which Columbus returnedwhen he was recalled by QueenIsabella when he was already onhis way to offer his services inFrance. The bridge at Pinos is aVisigoth construction dating fromthe 7th c. –one of the few stillextant. There are several goodbicycle rides in the area.
Mention of this locality goes backto the 8th c. BC and in Arabic itwas known as Wabasar, describedas a farmstead by Ibn al-Khatib.The settlement was abandonedafter the Morisco (baptized Moor)rebellion against Philip II. Thesurrounding land produces oliveoil, good wine and home-madepork sausages. Traditional dishesinclude gachas picantes, choto enajillo, cordero a la caldereta and migascon melón.
Another farmstead in the area of the plains of Granada. Thereare some Moorish baths in the southern part of the hamlet,which has splendid views, being located in Sierra de Huétor,where trekking, climbing and hang-gliding are possible.
This was the place chosen by the Ziridkings for their leisure. It lies in themountainous depression to the Northof Granada, 915 m. asl. In the 10th c.it was mentioned as "the potter's hamlet"or "the clay hamlet". In the 14th and15th centuries it is mentioned by IbnBattuta and Ibn al-Khatib. There aremany flour mills and numerous bakeriesstill exist. Its fame is due to the bread
baked there, to the quality of the water and to its attractivelocation.
This hamlet was originally created whenthe engineering works were carried outfor taking water from Fuente deAynadamar along a ditch to theAlbayzín quarter in Granada, under theNasrid dynasty. The ditch is still extant,having undergone some slight changes.The Palace and the Church of ElCuzco, dating from 18th c. stand out.
Its privileged locationbetween the Mediterraneancoast and the upperGuadalquivir river, betweenthe East coast and southernAndalusia, crossroads ofhistorical paths, its uniquelandscape, the contrastbetween the peaks of SierraNevada and the subtropicalenvironment of the coastalregions, have joined thesuccessive civilizations inorder to shape the moderncity of Granada.It is the end of the Route of the Caliphate and the commondestiny to all the routes of El legado andalusí. Being the capitalof the last of the Muslim kingdoms in the Iberian Peninsula, thepatrimony of Granada encloses the memory of eight-centuriesof Hispano-Muslim civilization inside the Alhambra palaces, acivilization that is unique for its distinctive features andconstitutes one of the most valued treasures of mankind.Granada captivates the visitor through the enchantmentirradiated by the palace fortress of La Alhambra, quarters withan indelible andalusi stamp such as the Albayzin, a wonderfulframework of walls, carmenes (andalusi courtyards), palaces andancient mosques, along with a fabulous and amazing repertoryof monuments of all kind, such as the Cathedral, the RoyalChapel, the Madrasa, Corral del Carbón, Cartuja …